Christmas Is the Time To Say I Love You

I love making crafts.  It’s best to keep mental patients like me busy with such nonsense.

I found a set of instructions for Swarovski crystal decorated Christmas cards.  You can see the instructions here.  I liked the idea, but I like to do things my own way, plus I wanted to use some things I had on hand.  So I cut out the tree pattern and used some of the ideas from the instructions and some of my own.

tools

I gathered my tools.  I had a needle, a pair of tweezers (for picking up the small beads), a pair of pliers (for convincing a bead to slide over the needle), 1/8″ hole punch, scissors, tape, a pencil, and a small flexible ruler.

trees

I used the Swarovski pattern to cut out the trees.  The Swarovski instructions called for green cardboard.  I found some beautiful shiny, green card stock.  For some of them, I used the hole punch down each side (you can click on the picture to see more detail).
I used several different types of ribbon.  The pink ribbon is 3/8″ organdy cross-dye ribbon.  The gold is 1/8″.  These were both difficult to thread through a needle and beads.
These ribbons are just plain 1/8″ ribbon.
And I used some of this metallic cord.  This was bulky and it made it a bit more difficult to attach the beaded tree to the actual front of the card.

This was, by far, the easiest thing to bead though.  I didn’t need, and couldn’t use, a needle for this.

And, of course, I used some embroidery floss, which is what the directions called for. I have a bunch of assorted embroidery floss from other craft projects so I used what I had rather than buying specific colors.  I think, if I were buying, I’d buy the variegated floss and used one color per card rather than switching floss mid-tree as in the directions.
Sorry Swarovski, I didn’t use any Swarovski crystals for this.  I did use some of these silver star beads. These were great because they are very easy to thread with everything except the metallic 1/8″ ribbon and the 3/8″ ribbon.  Those two ribbons wanted to unravel when being beaded.
I have a huge bag of these cheap little silver beads.  They were perfect on the embroidery floss.  They fit over the needle and they are cute.
These are E seed beads.  I used these pastel seed beads on the 3/8″ pink ribbon.  The combination is really feminine and pretty.
I also used these clear seed beads and red and green Japanese seed beads.
Here’s an assortment of the beaded trees.
And some close up shots.

 

I figured out after a few that, when using the hole punch, I needed to have pairs of holes.  If you look, I have a single hole at the top of some of the trees.  This created problems.
I didn’t feel obligated to put a bead on every string.
See.  The pink ribbon looks so pretty and feminine.
I used the ribbon like thread and slipped the beads down over the needle.  Some of the seed beads were less than cooperative and I used the pliers to pull the needle and my nails to pull the bead down over the needle.  My hands are very, very sore.
I really love the blue ribbon against the tree.  I liked using the different color seed beads on the bottom tree here.  But for some reason, this particular mix of seed beads had very small holes and I only used them for one tree.  It was just destroying my hands trying to force the beads on.
I supposed I could have used more than one color ribbon per tree to achieve more variation, but I really liked the effect of the single ribbon color.  Plus, I’m making 50 of these so…..
The embroidery floss is so cute. I didn’t change color as often as the Swarovski instructions direct, but I didn’t use their crystals either.  I love how freely the beads move on the floss (and the cord).

These were the easiest to glue to the cards.

The instructions suggest using double sided tape to adhere the trees to the cards. I decided I would use this instead.  Use the double sided tape.  This is messy as it comes up through the holes.

And, although this is supposedly “quick dry”, quick is a relative term.

The final product.

I vary from Swarovski here as well.  The instructions say to use bigger card stock and to make 3 trees per card. That’s great and all, especially for them trying to sell those overpriced crystals, but I stuck with one tree per card.

I bought a set of 50 cards and envelopes for $4.

I printed a greeting on regular copy paper, cut it out, and used a glue stick to put it on the inside of each card.

So far, I’ve completed 21 cards.  Only 29 more to go.

 

 

I should probably get back to work then.

Have fun! I hope you like my little project.

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